tampabay.com

Real estate deal worth $15.5-billion

By TIMES WIRES
Published May 30, 2007


NEW YORK - Tishman Speyer Properties - owner of New York's Rockefeller Center and the Chrysler building - and Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. will buy Archstone-Smith, which is based in Englewood, Colo., for about $15.5-billion, turning one of the largest publicly traded real estate trusts over to private investors.

The buyout announced Tuesday provides further evidence of a booming market for commercial real estate and intense investor interest in owning real estate investment trusts, which pay lower taxes by distributing almost all taxable income to shareholders.

The sale is expected to close in the third quarter.

The company will pay its last regular quarterly dividend on Thursday. Shareholders still must vote on the buyout, though no date was announced.

"Archstone is an exceptional company that has built one of the finest collections of multifamily assets in the industry, " Tishman Speyer senior managing director Rob Speyer said in a statement.